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Boxer Mundine keen to move into politics

After proving himself in the ring, boxer Anthony Mundine has another fight on his hands reports AAP and carried on the Age and Sydney Morning Herald web sites.

The former world champion has announced his plan to run as an independent in the inner-western Sydney seat of Marrickville in next year's NSW state election, in a move to secure Redfern's Aboriginal housing area The Block.

The suburb's Aboriginal community have reacted angrily to proposed changes to planning controls by the Redfern Waterloo Authority (RWA) and the Minister for Redfern-Waterloo Frank Sartor which they say would halve the amount of housing allowed on The Block.

The RWA also plans to increase the amount of housing the government can build on nearby government owned land.

The Aboriginal Housing Company (AHC), which owns The Block, fears the move is a precursor to the government's aim to take control of the area away from Aboriginal people and limit the number of Aboriginal homes that can be built on the land.

At a rally staged by local community groups on Thursday, Mr Mundine, who is Aboriginal and nicknamed The Man, described Mr Sartor as a "racist bigot".

"Obviously there's a lot of racism and a lot of despicable acts going on within the government, especially with Frank Sartor," Mr Mundine told hundreds of supporters.

"I'm not afraid to say it, I feel he's a racist bigot."

He said the Aboriginal people were still fighting the land struggle.

"We purchased this land and now they want to try and come into our home and our place and say what we can and cannot do with it and kick us out," Mr Mundine said to a cheering crowd.

"Well how would they like it if me and a few of the boys from The Block went to their place and there was, say, 10 people in the house (and) we said 'Listen, half of youse gotta get out'?

"If the Block don't stand, then Sartor, you don't stand."

Even though he would have little chance of winning Marrickville, which doesn't include Redfern, Mr Mundine could take votes away from Labor, currently held by Education Minister Carmel Tebbutt.

Tom Uren, a former minister in the Whitlam government, which made the first purchase of The Block, also addressed the rally.

Describing himself as once a "pug", he said he supported Mr Mundine all the way.

"I think he's (Sartor) a man of excessive arrogance," Mr Uren said.

"After all, he's been in the Labor Party five minutes and he seems to be making most of the decisions."

The AHC plans the establishment of a cultural and arts centre called the Pemulwuy Project, named after the legendary Aboriginal warrior of the early 19th century.

This would also provide housing, a business college and a sports centre.

Peter Valilis from the ACH said under boundary changes at the election, The Block would become part of Marrickville.